In a stunning revelation, a new poll conducted by the Daily Mail suggests that approximately 20% of young Americans harbor a positive view of Osama Bin Laden, the mastermind behind the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil. Additionally, roughly 30% of this demographic perceive Bin Laden’s driving ideologies as a “force for good,” initiating a wave of concerns about the potential normalization of terrorism among America’s youth.
TPM's Ari Hoffman @thehoffather on Gen Z having a positive view of Osama bin Laden:
"Do you guys not realize how poisoned our educational institutions are?" pic.twitter.com/3FodwCCWVN
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) December 28, 2023
The poll surveyed individuals aged 18 to 29, probing their perceptions of the late Al-Qaeda leader, who orchestrated the brutal September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, claiming the lives of nearly 3,000 Americans. Within this age group, 8% confessed a “completely positive” view of Bin Laden, while an additional 12% confessed a “somewhat positive” perspective. In an unsettling twist, 8% appreciated both his worldview and actions, while 23% disapproved of his actions but respected his views.
This shocking revelation surfaced just a month after the virality of TikTok videos in which young Americans read and sympathized with Bin Laden’s “Letter to America,” a document justifying the horrific 9/11 terrorist attacks. Unsurprisingly, these poll results have rattled the 9/11 victim community.
Terry Strada, mourning her husband lost in the North Tower’s disruption, labeled these statistics “horrifying” and indicative of a disturbing trend of terrorism normalization in America. “What is wrong with our youth? How do they not realize the horrors of terrorism?” she questioned.
Additionally, Brett Eagleson, who lost his father in the South Tower attack, blamed the U.S. government’s perceived lack of transparency regarding Saudi involvement for the emerging sympathy for Bin Laden among young Americans. “We have never been told the full story or truth about what happened to us on 9/11,” Eagleson stated. He insisted that the distortion of truth surrounding the event could be steering today’s youth towards extremist positions.
In an interesting juxtaposition, a survey held by Cygnal in October revealed that the majority (57.5%) of Muslim Americans deemed Hamas’ terrorist attack against Israel “justified.” In stark contrast, 75% of all Americans condemned Hamas’ actions, underscoring complex and evolving attitudes towards global extremist activities.
The concerning Daily Mail poll results expose the mass generalization and romanticization of terror that threatens America’s future. With nearly a fifth of young Americans holding a positive perspective of Osama Bin Laden, the urgency of tackling these starkly divisive and troubling perspectives becomes clearer, marking an exigent call for accurate education, dialogue, and a meticulous investigation into the 9/11 attacks’ handling.
In essence, the results signal a severe disparity in understanding global terrorism and the influencing factors behind such catastrophic events as 9/11. As these revelations unfold, they spotlight the urgent need for governmental transparency on international terrorist activities and robust, fact-based education to uproot emerging sympathies for extremist figures and ideologies.